Thank You for Today

Death Cab for Cutie

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Thank You for Today Review

by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

With Thank You for Today, Ben Gibbard moves Death Cab for Cutie into a new phase, one that reflects his newly minted middle age and one without Chris Walla. It's a new beginning, but one that announces itself with a whisper. Thank You for Today simmers in a fashion that's not unfamiliar to Death Cab, but there's a definition to the composition and production of its ten songs that keeps the album far from the reaches of mood music. Make no mistake, Thank You for Today still casts a specific spell -- one that's supple yet subtle, music that feels as cozy as a warm bath yet has a quiet urgency derived from Gibbard taking stock of how the world has changed around him. Gibbard doesn't shy away from all of the issues familiar to a modern American urbanite, musing about gentrification and loves old and new, all from a vantage point of somebody who is comfortable about where he's at but knows what's been lost. This results in an album where the melancholy is bittersweet, not all-consuming, which means Thank You for Today is softly reassuring even when its intent is lightly barbed.

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